This post may contain affiliate links. I may receive commissions for purchases made through links in this post. Learn More.
There’s a giant pink elephant in the room, and no, it’s not made of marshmallow or an edible treat. It is, in fact, the giant misconception that being a singleton on Valentine’s Day is some sort of disease or agonizing challenge.
It’s not that agonizing.
Sure, for a while after my divorce (2009/2010), I loathed Valentine’s Day. I hated on the love day for a bit, it’s only natural.
But now? I’ve become quite the pro at solo Valentine’s Days and while travelling. In fact, it’s become a tradition as I’m usually in Hawaii visiting family.
HOW TO MAKE THE MOST OF VALENTINE’S DAY WHEN YOU’RE SINGLE(& TRAVELLING)
1. Embrace it.
I love LOVE. I love to travel. And I love simplicity all in equal measure. So why not get in on the love train and treat this day as a self-care day? Embrace it as a day of your own that you are entitled to the same as everyone else.
2. Show no fear.
Are your pesky friends asking for the 50 millionth time if you’re dating yet? Or, did you walk into a restaurant and say, “just one” like you’re a pariah? (I did this.) Well, it’s time to show no fear and confidently say, “No, I’m not dating and I’m okay with it.” And, it’s “for one” when you walk confidently into that restaurant solo. Let all eyes be on you! And who cares? You’re single and livin’ it up. Remember, you don’t have to open your purse to buy gifts anymore! How’s that for saving money?
3. Be comfortable in your own skin. Be you.
This needs no explanation. Never hide who you are. I know, it’s hard sometimes with pressure coming from all directions, but you’re only hurting you. Be proud of your life experiences and the person they’ve molded you into.
Looking for a few on-the-go Valentine’s Day ideas? Here’s a few from my archives:
1. Be still.
We’re all minimalist here right? Well, there’s nothing wrong with choosing a place to sit and be still. Pick a place on your list of things to do and see and stay there. Take some time to savour a quick bite, enjoy beautiful art, or people watch.
2. Make it a day of white space.
Instead of running around trying to see it all, photograph it all, and Insta-story it all, why not pause and create a day of simplicity — full of white space to really let your creativity flow and find yourself again? Sit at a cafe by the ocean savouring a latte and the crashing waves.
Not by the ocean?
Why not spend several hours at a Parisian cafe watching scooters, cars, and people race by without a care in the world? I enjoyed doing this in the Opera district while visiting Paris in 2009 for the French Open. No phone. No distractions. Just me, a cuppa, and a croissant. Most relaxing day ever.
3. Dine at a Slow food restaurant.
Grab your trusty guidebook and hit up a Slow food restaurant solo. As I’ve learned from plenty of experience, there’s nothing wrong with dining out solo. In fact, I’ve gotten used to it. The real challenge is avoiding picking up your phone and instead simply sitting calmly and eating. Try it sometime and be proud and confident!
Can’t find a restaurant? Look for an establishment that sources local ingredients and prepares them as naturally as possible. It could be a cafe, coffee shop, juicery, or sushi joint.
Slow Food resources + ideas:
4. Go on a sunset hike with hot cocoa and chocolates.
Who wouldn’t want to sit somewhere with a view to die for while sipping on gourmet hot cocoa? That’s is the ultimate in cozy, comfy, self-lovin’.
And, it’s pretty easy to DIY.
For the adventurers and backpackers:
How about S’mores by the fire?
Two years ago, I had the opportunity to stay at the Ritz Carlton Half Moon Bay in California and my room had a fire pit and room service offered a s’mores kit! So I ordered up dinner (with the S’mores kit), then watched the sunset while roasting marshmallows over my very own fire pit and eating s’mores by the fire solo.
The staff at the hotel were super accommodating too! I told them I was solo and asked for a half portion s’mores kit and they bent over backwards to provide it. See? Sometimes it takes not being afraid to ask! There’s nothing shameful about being solo and you shouldn’t be made to feel that way.
This was my splurge hotel stay on a 1600 mile road trip of California in the fall of 2016.
5. Stay in and order room service with some bubbly.
This works for any holiday and I did it one Christmas in NYC, but who says you can’t do this on Valentine’s Day? I booked a nicer suite with a fireplace at The Royalton, ordered room service, started a fire, lit candles, and enjoyed my meal over bubbly SANS technology of any kind. After my indulgent dinner, I had a soak for one in the beautiful tub and relished every moment of it.
This year, while in Hawaii, I’ve opted for a twist on number five on the list. Since I’m helping out my ageing parents, I decided to make it a family Valentine’s Day and I’m making a meal. It’ll be Fettucine Alfredo, Caesar salad, maybe some vino, and I’ll snag some chocolate dipped strawberries from Costco for the finishing touch!
Even though you’re single and may be travelling, there’s no reason you can’t enjoy Valentine’s Day. And any of the options above can be DIY’ed with ease and a focus on simplicity.
How do you make the most of Valentine’s Day?
Get access to weekly inspiration and tips for living a simpler, joy-filled life.